Samsung TouchWiz tips and tricks for Galaxy and others

These tips and tricks are specific to the Samsung Touchwiz interface:

Cool things you can do with TouchWiz:

Homescreens: TouchWiz supports upto 7 homescreens, there are 4 easy ways to quickly jump between them:

  • Tapping on the tiny dots near the bottom of the screen and jumping between them directly.
  • Tapping and sliding left to right to quick scroll, much like the ultimate Compiz desktop on Ubuntu!
  • Pinch and zoom out to see all 7 desktops, much like Mac OSX multiple desktops and mission control!
  • The usual slide from left to right, screen by screen. TouchWiz wraps around from 7 back to screen 1.
Screenshots:
To take a screenshot on the android, tap and hold the home icon and quickly tap and hold the power button. If you end up getting a screenshot of your recent launched task list, this will depend upon your timing, don’t hold home as long before tapping power.
Brightness adjust from any home screen:
This is a time saver. Touch and hold the status bar, then drag your finger to the right to make the screen brighter. This android brightness shortcut also works to quickly dim your screen by holding the notification bar and dragging to the left.
This no longer works in Android 4.1.2 for me, now the brightness slider can be pinned to the top of the drop down notifications, but if you slide to left or right it just shows the date info. Liked it better before. My new favorite Android brightness widget is Lux. After trying just several, even root required brightness apps, this is the only one that will take the brightness lower than the lowest brightness set by the factory software. Lux can replace the Touchwiz brightness slider on the notification drop down too!  Lux is the best auto brightness widget for Android to date.
Browser text wrap:
The Samsung TouchWiz and Galaxy browser doesn’t wrap text to fit the screen when you zoom, by default. But you can turn this on in:
Browser->Settings->”Auto Fit pages” (Check this)
Browser User Agent spoof:
It’s built in to the browser with an easy radio button to mimick many good computers/browsers:
Type “about:useragent” in your URL bar and you can set it to be an iphone!
Pinch/Zoom based Tab switching:
While viewing a webpage, pinch and zoom out to view all of your open tabs and cycle through them like iTunes coverflow.
Custom Fonts for the phone:
Go to Settings->Screen Display->Font Style->Then choose your style or choose the option to download.
Change the built in homescreen bottom (dock) drawer apps:
That’s the preset apps that you think you’re stuck with at the bottom “app drawer” on every home screen. Tap the all applications icon->tap menu->edit->then drag whatever app you’d like to replace onto one of the default four to on the bottom.
Keep your videos from switching from landscape to portrait while watching:
This is faster than turning off your auto-rotate on your phone and also less permanent:
While watching any video with the built in player, tap the power button and you’ll see a lock icon appear on the upper right (in landscape)
Special screen testing mode: This tests the lcd, the sensors and much of the android hardware:
Dial #0*#
Search key: If you don’t have a dedicated search key (Magnify Glass icon)
Long press menu. This normally brings up the recently launched tasks on most androids.
Dial by spelling your contact name:
Just like a phone alpha pad.
Quick calling from your contact list:
Swipe to the right to call your contact immediately.
Quick texting from your contact list:
Swipe to the left to text your contact immediately.

2 Comments

  1. Bruce Inglis says:

    Can’t get text wrap in browser to work the way you describe – ‘auto fit pages’ doesn’t work in my Galaxy s2 or Galaxy s3

    • GoogleThem says:

      Galaxy S3, that’s nice. My guess is that you’re using the stock Web browser, Opera mini wraps nicely, but the pages aren’t supposed to look like they were intended for computers. If you want good original layout balanced with good text wrapping for the small screen Dolphin browser is my choice.

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